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Gastrointestinal tract

The digestive tract is the system of organs within multicellular animals that takes in food, digests it to extract energy and nutrients, and expels the remaining matter. The major function of the gastrointestinal tract are ingestion, digestion, absorption, and defecation. The GI tract differs substantially from animal to animal. Some animals have multi-chambered stomachs, while some animals' stomachs contain a single box. In a human adult male, the GI tract is approximately 6.5 meters (20 feet) long and consists of the upper and lower GI tracts. The tract may also be divided into foregut, midgut, and hindgut, reflecting the embryological origin of each segment of the tract.

The remainder of this article focuses on human gastrointestinal anatomy; see digestion for the process in other organisms.

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